Sorcery: Contested Realm Rules Update (July 2024)

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Erik's Curiosa

Sorcerers, the event season of Gen Con, Spiel Essen, and SorceryCon is upon us! Many of these upcoming events will feature organized gameplay and tournaments, so we thought it was a good idea to share some minor changes to the rulebook and get everyone on the same page.

We have only two changes for you. One is a change to the mulligan rule and the other is a minor clarification regarding the Avatar’s life value. Specifically, in this last instance, we’ve added just a small clarification that the Avatar’s starting life is also the maximum life that it can have during the game. Any life gained beyond their starting life is ignored.

The main change is to the mulligan, so let’s take a closer look at that.

Changes to the Mulligan Rule

One of the effects of the old mulligan rule was that you could really dig into your spellbook and atlas to find those critical cards. This ability made the decks far too consistent and overly reliant on a certain set of powerful cards. So when we looked at this problem, we wanted to re-introduce a bit more risk into your opening hands to make that decision point meaningful.

In the case of the spellbook, you could expose up to six cards (about 15% of your deck) to find critical things such as cores or the Philosopher's Stone (or a Highland Princess to then find said cores or stone) or other lynchpin cards. Even if you didn’t end up finding them, you were still that much more likely to in the following turns.

The problem is even more acute with the atlas, owing to that deck’s smaller size. The ability to mulligan away three sites and dig three cards deeper into your atlas means that you’re able to see 30% of your sites at the start of the game and grab some essential cards. Your access is further enhanced with sites like Crossroads, allowing you to look even further in your first turn (about 50% of your atlas).

Both of these situations were even more dramatic in limited formats like draft, where your decks are a lot smaller (25 spells and 12 sites). A hard mulligan in that situation would grant you access to 25% of your spellbook and 50% of your atlas (or 83% of your atlas if you were lucky enough to draft a Crossroads!).

Now the issue is not so much the depth of knowledge you could gain at the start of a game, but rather that you could do both, with little reason not to, making your decks much more reliable. In Sorcery, we want that decision to be dramatic and meaningful, and also we want to be able to scale effectively with future sets.

The new mulligan rule limits a player to a maximum of three cards. You can still dig deep into one deck or the other, but just not both. If you want to delve deep into the atlas to find your Roots of Yggdrasil, you can, but at the cost of keeping whatever spells fate has dealt you at the start of the game!

These improvements reflect our commitment to delivering an exceptional gaming experience, fueled by the community’s invaluable input. Your feedback and engagement are incredibly important to us!

As always, our lines of communication are open, and we take your feedback to heart. Feel free to post your questions in our community spaces, including the Sorcery Discord server and Facebook group.

Rulebook Links

You can find the updated rules here: Updated Rules.

We have also made a version that highlights the changes to the rules since the last time you saw them.

You can find that highlighted version here: Rules - Highlighted Changes.

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